7 Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains. 8 You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. (James 5:7-8 NIV)
They say, “Patience is a virtue.” I believe it, but patience has never been one of my strengths. I’m wired for “Now.” I can’t say that I know anybody who has a Ph.D. in Patience. That could be why we are urged, over and over again, to be “patient” in God’s Word.
I read some of the verses in the New Testament where the word “patient” appears this morning. I learned that God wants me to be patient in the situations I face in life as well as with the people I deal with in life. That pretty much encompasses all of life doesn’t it? All of us face trials of some kind or another throughout our lives. Paul wrote to the followers of Jesus in Rome and said, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12:12 NIV) As troubling as trials can be, people can try our patience even more. Difficult people can make life difficult for all of us. Paul wrote to the folks in Thessalonica, “And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone.” (1 Thessalonica 5:14 NIV) I need that reminder to be patient with everyone and I hope that others are allowing God’s Word to remind them to be patient with me also.
I love the verse in James 5 because James urges his readers to be patient with an expected hope. The hope is found in verse 8 where James writes, “You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.” (James 5:8 NIV) I can remember going through two-a-day football practices from the time I was in Middle School through College. I knew there was a set number of days that we would have to endure the heat and long practices. If there was no end in sight I don’t know if I would have made it, but because I knew they would eventually come to an end I resolved to finish. Well, I’m doing something much more significant now in serving the Lord and I know He is true to His promise. These trials of every sort will eventually come to an end and I will see His glorious face so I will press on.
My prayer today, Lord, is that You will empower me to be patient in all situations that come my way today. Never let me lose sight that You are coming my way.